DENHAM SPRINGS, La, (BRPROUD) Overgrown grass and trees cover graves at the Felder Cemetery off Highway 16 in Denham Springs. Volunteers cut grass at the front of the abandoned grounds but nothing is done in the back. That’s why Boy Scouts Trooper leader Cameron Cockerham plans to get to work.
“We decided to come out here, and we’re going to clean it up,” said Cockerham.
Cameron’s father was looking up their family history and found they have relatives buried here. The 17-year-old was not pleased when he saw his great-great-grandparents’ graves.
Cockerham said, “It was sad really because there are a lot of families and not just mine. There are a lot of families that either their direct relatives or people that don’t know their graves are here. They are gone or left here to be overgrown.”
The nearly two centuries old property has been neglected for years. Cleanup is turning into more than Cameron’s project. People in the community are planning to help this weekend.
Cockerham said, “We want to bring the whole community together. I know a lot of people that have relatives out here and that still live in the area.”
Juan Prado, district director of the Sewell Eagle District, stated, “This is a little bit unique eagle project. I don’t know that many scouts would undertake such an effort, especially in multiple ways and giving back to the community where he serves.”
Cameron is making it easy for families to find graves for many years to come, all while becoming an Eagle Scout, the highest rank in the scout’s program.
Cameron is creating an organization to pay for routine maintenance of the cemetery.